Fatal Flooding Rips Through French Riviera

  • Oct 07, 2015

Violent storms and flooding rocked the French Riviera on 7 October 2015, causing tremendous structural damage and leaving at least 19 dead. This disastrous storm and its accompanying fatal flood waters tore through Cannes and the nearby cities well into Sunday. French citizens in the Côte d’Azur region of France are left picking up the pieces from their communities and beautiful beaches from what some French officials are calling a “natural disaster.”

Our ENcast forecast engine detected a great deal of both cloud-to-ground (yellow) and in-cloud (purple) lightning strikes in the area, especially on the Cannes Coast. Notice how the area is practically covered in lightning strikes. In-cloud lightning is proven to be fundamental for predicting and detecting dangerous storm activity.

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While the above lightning forecast is proof of a dangerous storm system, we also found incredibly high amount of rain using PulseRad. PulseRad, our synthetic radar, detected 100mm of rainfall in the Riviera on Saturday, October 3rd alone. This rapid pace of rainfall in such a short amount of time led to flash flooding in the area’s low-lying regions.

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This devastating storm was also well covered on social media platforms like Twitter, from residents and tourist alike. BBC correspondent on the ground, Stuart Dredge, shared the above photos depicting the extent of flooding in Cannes in a Twitter in the post pictured below

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In addition to the 19 fatalities during the storm, there are reports of 4 people still missing from the area as well as missing vehicles, which could be attributed to either flood waters carrying them out to sea or theft. Thousands remain without power as clean-up efforts continue this week.